You won’t imagine what a WiFI router has been used for

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you wont imagine what a wifi router has been used.jpg
you wont imagine what a wifi router has been used.jpg

Front of the router with its blue lights

Although it may seem like your router has a single purpose, the truth is that it is a much more powerful and complex device than it appears. A good example of this is what they have managed to do imaginative users who love to find a way to modify every last piece of technology that passes through their hands.

Imagine that we tell you that, to play GTA, the classic action game, you don’t need a computer. And no, you won’t need a console either, or even a mobile phone. What has just been shown to be possible is to run the Rockstar Games game on a router. How crazy! And the best thing is that it doesn’t seem, now that they’ve explained it, that complicated either.

A router that gains another function

The authors of this genius have been the members of the KittenLabs group, who specialize in mods and who are already used to letting their crazy ideas flow to shape all kinds of unexpected projects. In this case, what they have done exactly is take GTA Vice City inside a wireless router and get it working smoothly.

Official photo of the TP-Link TL-WDR4900 router model

Until now we had already seen games on strange devices, such as the legendary Doom, which they have practically converted to everything you can think of, but on a router? It is most curious! According to the authors of this project, the router they have used has been the TP-Link TL-WDR4900, which is equipped with internal components that have made it easier for them to materialize their idea.

A router and a graphics card

No, there is no GPU inside the router. But it was necessary that, to start the Grand Theft Auto game, yes that there was a graphics card involved. Therefore, the first thing those responsible for the project considered was how to connect one so that they could take advantage of its functions. The good news is that the router they chose gave them the opportunity to achieve this. It has a PowerPC CPU and WiFi connection chipsets that are connected via PCIe. Starting from these features already included in the router, what they did was implement modifications to the PCIe and other various adjustments until they were able to connect an AMD Radeon model HD 7470.

Although this router was initially put on sale in 2013, the truth is that it is a very advanced model that has given them enough power. But it is not a unique case, since routers They have more power than you can imagine and what it may seem like. With this specific model they had to make modifications, but not because of power, but because they saw that it was not easy for them to connect the GPU. They had to resort to installing Debian Linux on the router and, from there, they were able to complete the project.

They also mention that their original intention was to use an AMD Radeon RX 570, but that they ran into many compatibility issues. At that moment they thought that, in reality, they didn’t have to have such an advanced GPUbut they could use an older model, since for a game like GTA Vice City it would be more than enough.

They also had to make some adjustments to the game itself to make it load with this type of device and configuration, but in the end they did it. They tell the entire process on their website, so if you are curious to know how the project was or even want to try to replicate it, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to read their publications. This helps us see that, as we said, routers should not be seen as devices of little relevance, but rather, inside, there is much more power and capacity than you can imagine.

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Abraham
Expert tech and gaming writer, blending computer science expertise